What is important for friends to know about me?

I have an overbearing sense of responsibility toward others. I enjoy honest and meaningful connection where noble values prevail.  I learn most from those who are honest about their struggles. I find myself needing solitude in order to appreciate the company I keep. I am selective when it comes to showing my playful and humorous side. I need a high level of independence in a relationship.  I am open to new experiences when I don’t feel rushed or pressured.  If I don’t have my own space to retreat to and recharge, I get fatigued and irritable.

As far as my temperament goes, it is artistic and colors the way I see the world. I seek beauty in the commonplace. I align creativity to my spiritual calling.  It’s a side of me few take time to get to know.  I seek substance over style. I shun doing things in a run-of-the-mill way. 

I am called to attend to what is invisible to most, in a culture that has little or no understanding of the calling to spiritual and creative attunement.  My faith can be summed up in the Incarnation.  God descended to earth to show us humility, grace, servanthood and serendipitous wisdom. The teaching and challenges I have received for the past years at church have been lightweight and repetitive: so I have been searching greater depth to the Christian life.

Having a low threshold for sensory stimulation, I want to develop greater coping strategies. I have an aversion to loudness, triteness, small talk and ready-made scripts.

I admire literary authors and how they delve the subterranean currents of the human heart.  I never tire exploring the forgotten world of classic literature. I am skeptical when it comes to convention, the media and consumerism. Writing (as well as Classic Literature) is intimately connected to my spiritual walk. Since my youth, it has been a way of exploring my faith and personal growth. I admire how authors view life through an inner lens. I enjoy reading classic literature over contemporary appreciating how authors infuse feeling into words, creating word pictures through the five senses.

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Many cultural beliefs are socially dictated.

~ vincenzo ©

Never settle for a partner who confuses résumés for poetry. ~ vincenzo ©

“…her words were always like ready-made clothes, and never fitted individual thoughts. Anybody might have used them, and with a change of proper names, they might have served to describe any subject.” – Elizabeth Gaskell

The quote above may seem a small annoyance to some, but it portrays one of my greatest sources of distress. The beauty of an imaginative soul is the power to visualize vitality even when reality is insipid and cold. I shun doing anything in a run-of-the-mill way. It is not only what I express, but how I express it that matters. Whenever I give expression to something, I am compelled to give it full flight.

Creativity is a kind of viewfinder you carry with you wherever you go. Your artistic leanings cannot help but shape your outlook. Although muted, art has its own language, principles and codes. Therefore, if someone clothes an idea or belief in conventional/prosaic language, it may collide with your heightened sensitivity. It causes you to resist certain phraseologies and truisms that create cognitive dissonance not only to your readers or viewers, but inside yourself as well. Therefore for the artist, there are not only differences of content to consider, but expressions /styles as well. This diversity requires heavy doses of humility and self-examination.

~ vincenzo ©

I like the sound of the term “cognitive dissonance”. I feel sophisticated and deep when I say it. It is also something I am recently experiencing.

Part of my training as a volunteer counselor at church requires attending Bible studies. However, Bible study is hardly a good name. It is more often a monologue in which one dominant member expresses his or her opinions while everyone else sits passively silent. How many secretly tune out is another question.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying the Bible is irrelevant. However, some Bible teachers seem to run on automatic pilot. They have a gift of presenting life superficially — low on soul searching or imagination. What I find equally disquieting is how anyone could be taking notes or nodding their heads in such a bleak context. Are they just pretending? Am I just crazy?

As usual, I am conflicted. I am forever questioning myself about issues that seem cut and dry to others. I tend to second guess myself whether I’m just being too hard while at the same time dreading the thought of another meeting.

I am also imagining what kind of dialogue I will have with the coordinator if or when I announce my resignation to her …rehearsing in my head line after line what we will be saying to each other.

Is faith about upholding the status quo? What does humility look like in such situations?

~ vincenzo ©

“Blow the candle out, I don’t need to see what my thoughts look like.”
― Émile Zola

When you place a compass in your car; you will discover the car has its own magnetic field. It’s not that the compass is not working, it’s just the instrument is being intercepted.

It’s the same way when it comes to accessing creativity. You are constantly having to work against the vortexes of the external world: appearances, standardization, evaluation, egoism, comparison, consumerism, competition, criticism and/or narcissism. In a world quick to offer endless ready-made ideas, products and services, imagination usually falls between the cracks of obtuse, stereotyped practices and habits.

~ vincenzo ©

institutional christianity can too often
come across as blah and restrictive
too celebrity-centered and guilt-inducing
i often struggle with wooden interpretations
when a personal searching is more helpful
when religion lacks individual searching
it becomes devoid of meaning
maybe it is just me
maybe it is just how i am wired

~ vincenzo